With a balanced budget, a stable tax rate, and strong financial reserves, the city of Bowie is strong and thriving, according to Mayor G. Frederick Robinson, who gave a State of the City speech to the Bowie Chamber of Commerce last week.
“Having travelled extensively across the state over the last several years I can say without reservation that Bowie continues to set the bar that others seek to emulate,” said Robinson.
Robinson credits much of the town’s financial success to their conservative budgetary process, including maintaining strong reserves, not engaging in long term borrowing and maintaining a triple A (AAA) bond rating. He also touted the city’s green policies and growing police force.
Now home to over 55,000 residents, there has been a 329 percent increase in retail square footage and a 200 percent increase in office space since 1990, said Robinson. Bowie is also home to more than 90 restaurants.
The mayor also touched on several development issues, including a planned CVS and car wash at Route 301 and Mitchellville Road, and a new medical/dental building that will be constructed where Tia’s Restaurant once operated. Robinson also touched on the proposed Melford amendment.
“I believe that we have a responsibility to examine the options here as a way to maximize the potential of this park and I look forward to this necessary discussion,” Robinson said about the proposed Melford covenant amendment.
Although he is a self declared Bowie optimist, Robinson also discussed some of the challenges the city is facing in light of the current economy with the lagging home values and the lack of state funding to support highway infrastructure projects.
However, Robinson ended things on a positive and hopeful note, saying that the city’s government and business community working together would keep Bowie strong.
“I know our commitment remains solid—to do what is best for Bowie even if at times those choices are challenging or difficult,” he said.
You can read Robinson’s full State of the City comments here on the city’s website.